LOS ANGELES, June 16, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The Founder & CEO of GT's Living Foods, GT Dave, announced today the Synergy Scholarship on behalf of new, non-profit entity, the GT Dave Foundation. The Synergy Scholarship fund is a $250,000 commitment awarded to LGBTQ+ youth pursuing entrepreneurial careers. The announcement of the Synergy Scholarship comes as part of a larger summer 2021 initiative, CommUNITY, celebrating three key pillars: uplifting diverse peoples, preservation of the planet, and accessibility to nutritious foods.
As a pioneer in the health and wellness movement and the creator of an iconic brand that has earned him the moniker "Kombucha King," GT began his entrepreneurial journey at the age of 15 years old. Struggling with the woes of starting a business, GT was also growing up as a gay man and exploring his identity. Through strength and perseverance, he channeled his creativity and unique point of view into the company that today holds leading rank as the #1 kombucha brand in the world.
"For many LGBTQ+ youth, there's a quiet, internal battle that happens; a voice from within that can at times carry guilt and shame… I say not anymore. I want to be the megaphone that drowns out that voice and affirms that you are loved, you are special, and your ideas matter,'" says GT. "I believe young people are the driving force of change, especially those in the LGBTQ+ community. As a gay entrepreneur who is still learning and growing in the business world, I can confidently say there's no set path to follow, so pave your own. With the Synergy Scholarship, I am dedicated to empowering LGBTQ+ youth and helping to mobilize their entrepreneurial dreams."
The Synergy Scholarship will be open to high school seniors who will graduate during the 2021-2022 academic year and who are part of the LGBTQ+ community. The scholarship will be awarded each year for five years, divided into differing amounts to deserving young people, totaling $250,000 by 2027. These individuals will have a passion and desire to improve their communities and the world through business and entrepreneurialism. Applicants must also demonstrate financial need and plan to pursue a degree at an accredited US post-secondary institution. In addition to the monetary contribution, GT will mentor the winners offering business guidance and advice during their awarded year.
In honor of Pride and the diversity pillar of the CommUNITY initiative, the Synergy Scholarship will help create new opportunities for LGBTQ+ youth. The remainder of CommUNITY's key tenets – planet preservation and food accessibility – will come to life in partnership with LA-based TreePeople, who since 1973 has grown to become Southern California's largest environmental movement with a mission to inspire, engage, and support people to take personal responsibility for the urban environment, and the Farmers Market Coalition, the only national non-profit dedicated to supporting farmers markets, in July and August, respectively.
The Synergy Scholarship will begin accepting applications in October 2021.
About GT's Living Foods: We believe that Mother Nature is the World's greatest healer. Since 1995, GT's Living Foods has revolutionized how people think and feel about Kombucha and fermented foods in the Western World. From the womb, founder GT Dave was raised vegetarian and taught that food can be medicine. He continues to uphold that philosophy with always pure, potent, and plant-derived fermented offerings produced in their most authentic form, never compromised. The fiercely independent, family-owned, and operated company is available in over 55,000 retailers across North America and Europe. Today and beyond, GT's Living Foods' driving purpose is to spread a global message that food can be medicine and through proper nutrition one can heal thyself. For more information, please visit www.gtslivingfoods.com.
About TreePeople: TreePeople's mission is to inspire, engage, and support people to take personal responsibility for the urban environment. Since 1973, TreePeople's mission has driven them towards creating a climate resilient region by empowering and supporting residents to build neighborhoods that are connected, adaptive and thus more resilient to climate change. With several thousand active volunteers, TreePeople endeavors to engage and educate the people throughout the region through their award-winning evidence-based programs. To learn more, go to: www.TreePeople.org.
About Famers Market Coalition: The Farmers Market Coalition is a membership-based nonprofit with the mission to strengthen farmers markets for the benefit of farmers, consumers, and communities. Since 2006, FMC has been serving as the only national organization dedicated to supporting farmers market operators and has provided important resources, technical assistance, and advocacy to cultivate the growing farmers market field across the US. Farmers markets are essential. Learn more at farmersmarketcoalition.org.